Supervisor Perez Details Efforts to Repair and Reopen County Roads Following Hurricane Hilary Impacts

Perez Details Efforts to Reopen County Roads

Thousand Palms Canyon Road taken earlier this week. It was taken by Jay Scarcella of Sky Valley.

Hurricane Hilary has caused upwards of $100 million in damage countywide, with the vast majority of the impacts on the Coachella Valley, especially on transportation infrastructure including Interstate 10, State Route 62, major city corridors and to multiple county roadways that sustained substantial damage and will require significant repairs.

Agencies responding to the impacts of the storm have all been working to address life safety issues, clear critical infrastructure, open road access for first responders, ensure every community has mobility and towards the ultimate goal of repairing and reopening all roads that were damaged by the storm.

Supervisor V. Manuel Perez provided the following information, as of Friday, Aug. 25, on the work that is being done on county roadways and what communities can expect for restoring the roads:

  • In Thousand Palms, Rio Del Sol Road is closed from Varner Road, running alongside the community of Thousand Palms and the City of Cathedral City limits. This road is a priority to reopen as it provides access to the Coachella Valley Animal Campus and Animal Samaritans veterinary clinic and local businesses. The county and city are coordinating on repairs and visiting the location today to determine what is needed to open the roadway.
  • Also in Thousand Palms, emergency work on Ramon Road and San Miguelito was expected to be completed by the end of the day (Friday, Aug. 25).
  • Thousand Palms Canyon Road, which runs between Thousand Palms and the communities of Indio Hills and Sky Valley, is closed. Emergency work on Thousand Palms Canyon Road will tentatively start on Monday, August 28 and take roughly one week to complete.
  • In the Thermal and Oasis communities, Harrison Street between Avenue 58 and Avenue 66 remains closed due to downed power lines. The Imperial Irrigation District is actively working around the clock to repair the downed power lines so the roadway can be reopened.
  • In the Mecca and North Shore area, county maintenance personnel are assisting with the reopening of Avenue 66 at Pierce Street. Cleanup work is taking place today and Saturday, with the goal of having it completed by the end of the day tomorrow. Once work on Avenue 66 is completed, maintenance staff will return to clean-up efforts in Mecca and North Shore.
  • Between Mecca and Interstate 10 near Chiriaco Summit, Box Canyon Road is currently closed. A contractor has been hired and will start work tentatively on Monday, Aug. 28. There is currently no timeframe on when the roadway will be reopened.
  • In Bermuda Dunes, county transportation maintenance crews will continue to remove minor debris and sweep the roadways as necessary.
Perez Details Efforts to Reopen County Roads

Photo taken Friday of the city and county roads washed out in the Desert Hot Springs community. (Courtesy of Supervisor Perez’s office.)

There are multiple county road closures in the Desert Hot Springs area, including North Indian Canyon Drive, Mission Lakes Boulevard, Worsley Road and Mission Creek Road. According to the Riverside County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, the most significant rain dropped on the upper Mission Creek northwest of Desert Hot Springs, which received 13 inches, nine inches of which fell in six hours equating to a 1,000-year storm. Due to the significant storm flows coming out of Mission Creek Canyon and adjacent canyons, many streets crossing Mission Creek have been overtopped with significant sediment, damaged or completely washed out. Several roads are maintained by the county and the City of Desert Hot Springs. The county and city will be working collectively on the restoration of the roads, with the assistance of the county flood control district.

“Recovery from a natural disaster such as this can often be a long and difficult process,” Perez said in a statement. “I want to thank the Riverside County Transportation Department and our emergency contractors for their efforts to repair and reopen these vital roads as soon as possible. We are focused on making sure all communities have access to mobility and have a way of getting through, and it’s important for all our roads to get reopened to help traffic and so that residents have quicker access and don’t have long distances to drive around. Communities will be seeing more progress happening as crews continue efforts to clear mud off the remaining roads, sweep streets of dirt and debris, regrade shoulders that washed out, and finish the work.”

For the latest information on county road closures, visit the emergency closure Web page. For city road closures, visit the city Web pages for the latest information.

Image Sources

  • Significant storm flows coming out of Mission Creek Canyon caused damage to roadways and to this bridge, Pierson Bridge, in Desert Hot Springs.: Riverside County Flood Control and Water Conservation District.